By popular request, the post where I share more of of my crunchy granola side and how I make my own homeopathic gripe water for the boys.
First, the backstory:
Before we even left the NICU, the boys were both dealing with upset stomach problems, at that time primarily painful gas, but eventually also reflux. In the beginning, we used Mylacon to help them, but the NICU nurses all recommended we use gripe water when we get home as a natural cure for painful gas. I liked the idea of a homeopathic solution, so once we got home we tried it out.
I was impressed. Just a little bit in their night time bottles alleviated their pain and their fussiness. I'm not saying its a perfect cure-all, but it certainly cured a lot.
But, we have twins and we were going through a lot of it. At $10 a bottle, it wasn't a good long term solution.
So, now I make my own.
Their are three primary ingredients in gripe water: chamomile, fennel, and ginger. Fennel has been used by herbalists and homeopaths for centuries to help with indigestion and as a gas-reliever. It also has some pain relieving properties. Ginger is a great herb for any problems in thr gastrointestinal tract, including nausea and gas. The third ingredient I use, chamomile, is great at reducing restlessness and insomnia and helps with irritability and anxiousness.
Some brands can also include peppermint, sugar, honey, agave, caraway, and/or aloe. Both peppermint and honey have properties I would like to include in my gripe water recipe, but aren't recommended for babies under 6 months. I'm unsure why the commercially available gripe waters would include these. I do plan to experiment and perhaps edit my recipe when the boys get older.
- 2 cups water
- 1 finger ginger
- 1 Tbsp fennel seed, crushed
- 2 chamomile tea bags (or 2 tsp fresh)
- Agave or sugar to taste
- Add ginger and fennel to water and bring to a boil. I should put my crushed fennel into a tea ball but I can't find mine, so the loose tea attachment for the Kuerig works well. I know others who allow it loose in the pot. I cut my ginger into large chunks so it can go loose. You could also do finer ginger and put it in your tea ball as well.
- Allow to boil softly until it reaches a golden amber color.
- Add chamomile tea.
- Cover and allow to steep for 20-30 minutes.
- If you are going to give it with a syringe, add agave or sugar at this point. I mix it into bottles and so don't feel the need to sweeten it.
- Serve to baby. I add 5-10mL to each evening and overnight bottle. You can give up to an ounce from what I have read. You can also use a medicine dropper and give it to them directly.
- Watch the content little fellow emerge!
I also dilute it with water and ice and drink it myself to help make my breastmilk easier for the boys to digest. When I drink it myself, I find the taste a bit bitter and so add a wee bit of honey into my glass. It really helps with Tripp and Davy's gas and reflux and is easy to make. I store it in the fridge and find it is good for a few days. It does eventually start to become less effective so I don't keep it more than 3-4 days.
If you like this post, check out my other homemade homeopathic trick: homemade pedialyte!